Driving while smoking was both diversionary and meditative. A time to enjoy CDs I never had time to listen to otherwise. Or a time to tackle problems at work, to break down writing blocks.
I've done some good thinking while driving and smoking.
I have done some good driving, too.
Because I am good at it. A bit holier-than-thou, I acknowledge. Not afraid to punish a traffic transgressor with some tailgating and a flick of the highbeams. Meanwhile, puffing away on a smoke, maybe a coffee in the other hand, steering with my left knee - quite an unnerving sight for the hunted driver ahead of me when they catch a glimpse in the rear-view mirror.
Now, without cigarettes, driving is just another chore.
With hands at 10 and 2 o'clock, I drive around like everyone else, just trying to get to Point B as fast as I can.
There's no reason to linger on the road if I can't smoke while doing it.
In other news ...
I was starting to feel insecure when I saw blog reader Jake's recent comment:
"It only takes a week to quit smoking, and then, if you're committed, it's over. ... No need to write any more. Thanks."
I would be morose about my apparent irrelevancy if not for the fact that I am ahead of a growing trend. Quitting the blog now would be irresponsible.
At another newspaper in Ontario, a writer has started a quit smoking blog. Only a couple days after I wrote about a vivid post-quit dream, this blogger wrote about dreams, too.
So Jake, you see, I can't stop now. I must continue to come up with new ways to write about quitting smoking. Not only do my readers in Toronto depend on it but other bloggers' readers may depend on it, too.